GUWAHATI, Aug 7 - The All Koch Rajbongshi Students� Union (AKRSU) today slammed the Centre�s initiative to grant ST status to six communities in the State and described the entire exercise as farcical. President of the student body Biswajit Rai expressed the apprehension that the Koch Rajbongshi community might once again get betrayed if the modalities for ST status are based on the demands of those organisations opposing the ST status to the Koch Rajbongshi community.
It may be mentioned here that in a meeting in Delhi yesterday, Union Minister Jual Oram assured the six communities that they would be accorded ST status and efforts would be made to change the necessary modalities for the purpose within this year.
However, the AKRSU, voicing its displeasure with the meeting, said that the Aikya Mancha of the six communities should make it public why it agreed to the proposal without any knowledge of the modalities.
�The Aikya Mancha of the six communities owes an explanation to the public. We fear that the Koch Rajbongshi community, even after getting the ST status, might be deprived of this privilege in the BTAD and other areas under autonomous councils and will not be able to contest elections from the reserved seats,� said Rai.
Meanwhile, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Assam Pradesh, has hailed the initiative of the Centre to resolve the long-standing demand of the six communities for ST status. Party spokesperson Rupam Goswami, in a statement issued to the press, said that the BJP Government is concerned about the aspirations of the six communities and all necessary steps would be taken to fulfil their aspirations.
�Now the BJP Government has initiated the process to resolve the long-standing problem. We appeal to all political parties and other organisations not to create any hurdle in this positive development. Everyone should refrain from playing politics with the issue,� said Goswami, accusing the Congress of only indulging in politics on the issue for the last 20 years.